Zenith Bank plc is now judged….the Best Commercial Bank In Africa!
This is the conclusion of comprehensive findings by world leading financial expert crew at Capital Finance International ( CFI.co).
The bank founded by holder of national honour, Member of the Order of Niger and advocate of I.T revolution, Mr Jim Ovia bagged this honour on part reasons of ‘it’s sterling work at home over the past 22 years and given the excellent progress already made in distant markets within Africa and far further afield’ Simple and elegant, the cover parades a clear and crisp picture of the Zenith Bank head man, along with the in your face caption ‘ Nigeria’s Gordon Emefiele: Winning Ways At Zenith Bank’.
The story and picture is the most prominent on the international magazine.
According to the CFI.co crew ‘ Zenith was picked out for our cover story this issue and described by the judging panel as a future leader in the international banking because of its excellent record at home and highly promising regional and international expansion programme. There is a strong leadership at the bank….’
A clearer perspective of how Zenith bank beat all others to its current standing is further provided in the opening words of the magazines special report on the financial institution and the entire report reproduced below
‘Zenith Bank was selected for CFI’s cover story because of it’s major success in our 2012 Banking Awards programme and given it’s outstanding contribution to the industry in Africa- but mainly because Zenith is a future leader in international banking. In our view Zenith is a name to watch’
The bank was named Best Commercial Bank in Africa this year in view of it’s sterling work at home over the past 22 years and given the excellent progress already made in distant markets within Africa and further afield.
2012: The Year So Far
Results for the past six months of 2012 show an improvement over the same reporting period last year with gross earnings of N151 billion (up 23 percent). Profit after tax rose to N42.4 billion (up 32 percent) while earnings per share stood at N1.35 versus N1.01 for the period ending June 30th 2011.
Praise is due to the Zenith Bank’s management team which is headed by Godwin Emefiele, the Group Managing Director and CEO, a pioneering staff member who has been a board member for more than a decade. He took over from the. Charismatic founding CEO, Jim Ovia, in August 2010. The bank’s exceptional performance stems from it’s experience leadership, professionalism and the vision of management and staff.
According to Emefiele, the bank’s main focus is that of building value for customers and unlocking the real value of their business. As he points out in Zenith’s most recent Annual Report, ‘Our performance and success hinges principally on satisfying customers better than the competitor’
Mr Emefiele reports that Zenith is on a solid trajectory and that is the most certainly the case: the Bank seems well positioned for the future.
The CEO has spoken of an obligation to build a stronger and more durable bank for the benefit of future generations: ‘ We shall persistently leverage our heritage of excellent people, sound business model and experienced management team to create pioneering solutions that surpass our stakeholder’s expectations.
The operating results of the bank, since it went public in 2004, tell of impressive performance by all relevant measurements. Total assets grew from $1.25bn in 2004 to $14.19bn in Q3 2011, representing a growth of 1.039 percent.
Within the same period, total deposits increased by 1.079 percent from $845m to $9.97bn, as at September 2011.
Zenith Bank has built a brand as a reputable, international financial institution- recognised for innovation, superior customer service and performance while creating premium value for all stakeholders. Today, the bank is known for its innovation, solid financial performance, stable and dedicated management, highly-skilled personnel, cutting edge ICT, strategic distribution channels and asset quality.
The key strategies used over the past 12 months top drive the robust growth were as follows:
. Delivery of superior service to all customers;
.Development of deeper and broader relationship with clients and a striving to understand their individual and industry characteristics with a view to formulating specific solutions for each segment of the customer base.
. Optimal expansion of the bank’s operations by adding new distribution channels and entering into new markets with strong identified opportunities.
.Maintenance of the Bank’s position as a leading service provider in Nigeria, while expanding its operations internationally in West Africa and the financial capitals of the world.
.Concentration on efforts to be a leading service provider in Nigeria by continuing to build on long standing relationships, capabilities and the strength of the Zenith brand and reputation.
. Enhancement of the Bank’s processes and systems to deliver new capabilities and achieve economies of scale.
Most Recent Full Year Results.
Sir Steve Omajafor, Chairman of Zenith, termed 2011 as ‘another challenging year for operators in the banking industry. Never-the-less Zenith was able to explot opportunities in the market which translated according to Omajafor into a ‘Cheery performance that further attests to the durability and resilience of the brand. These results are once again, an eloquent testimony to the sound financial health of the Bank and the Group’.
The year 2011 witnessed improved stability in the Nigerian banking sector and this was largely due to the impressive growth in the economy brought about by the successful economic and structural reforms initiated by government. Real GDP grew by 7.4 percent in Q3, 2011 ( a marginal reduction over the same period in the previous year due to decrease in the oil sector). Agriculture, wholesale and retail trading, telecoms, manufacturing, plus the finance and insurance sectors brought about significant non oil growth. Inflation was a challenge in 2011 and despite best efforts of the central Bank the rate reduced only marginally from 10.5 percent in November to 10.3 percent at year end.
Capital Management Assurance
The strategy for assessing and managing the impact of Zenith Bank’s plans on present and future regulatory capital forms and integral part of the bank’s strategic plan. Specifically, it considers how the present and future capital requirements will be managed and met against projected capital requirements based on its own assessment and against the regulatory capital requirements, taking account of the bank’s business strategy and value creation to all its stakeholders.
The capital adequacy of the bank is reviewed regularly to meet regulatory requirements in order to adopt and implement the decisions necessary to maintain the capital at a level that ensures the realisation of the business plan with a certain safety margin. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) requires each bank to maintain a certain ration of total regulatory capital to the risk -weighted asset at or above the minimum of 10 percent. Most of the bank’s capital is Tier 1 ( Core Capital), which consists essentially of share capital, retained earnings and reserves.
The group’s capital plan is linked to its business expansions strategy which anticipates the need for growth and expansion in its branch network and IT infrastructure. The capital plan sufficiently meets regulatory requirements as well as provides adequate cover for the groups risk profile. Its capital adequacy remains strong and the capacity to generate and retain reserves continues to grow.
Robust Liquidity Methods.
Zenith Bank’s liquidity profile remains very storng ( being a consistent net placer of fund in the interbank market) and its risk management practices give assurance that this profile will be maintained. The bank has a sound and robust liquidity risk management framework thayt ensures it maintains sufficient liquidity, including a cushion of unencumbered, high- quality liquid assets at times. Zenith Bank’s compliance with liquidity and funding requirements includes the following processes: projecting cash flows and considering the level of liquid assets necessary in relation to needs; monitoring balance sheet liquidity rations against internal and regulatory requirements; maintaining a diverse range of funding sources with adequate back up facilities; managing the concentration and profile of debt maturities; monitoring depositor concentration in order to avoid undue reliance on large individual depositors; and ensuring a satisfactory overall funding mix, while maintaining liquidity and funding contigency plans.
In 2009, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) conducted a special audit to ascertain the stability of the banking sector in the country. Zenith Bank was one of the 14 banks that passed the audit. The result of the audit led to the quasi-nationalisation of 10 banks representing about 50 percent of system assets.
Ratings And Corporate Governance
Zenith Bank has consistently recorded good ratings from both the international ( Fitch Ratings, Standard & Poor’s) and local ( Agusto & Co.) rating agencies. The rating on Zenith Bank plc are supported by its leading market position in all key performance indices.
Zenith Bank has consistently put in place a robust system of corporate governance, bearing a mind in the key elements of honesty, trust, integrity, openness and accountability as well as commitment to the organisations goals. To uphold strong corporate governance and transparency, the bank adopts a robust public disclosure policy.
This is to forestall incidences of abuse, such as insider trading. All financial information, as well as exceptional and extraordinary events capable of influencing the public opinion concerning the bank are approved for dissemination by the board and then released through authorised means to the public at the same time. The release of such information is done speedily and often as stipulated by regulatory bodies.
Most Banking Services Are Available At Zenith
Zenith operates across most banking service areas in both the public and private sectors.
Emphasis is placed on corporate and investment banking, commercial and consumer banking, personal and private banking, trade services and foreign exchange, as well as treasury and cash management. Other non- banking financial services are offered mainly through the subsidiaries. Senith has substantial market share in the manufacturing, construction, general trade and commerce and logistics sectors. The bank’s customer base is largely made up of large corporate entities- many of which are the subsidiaries of successful multinational corporations.